This season finally gives Dolphins something to be proud of
A lot of you joined the chorus of folks calling them grumpy old men. A lot of you wanted them to simply go away. A lot of you wanted the Pats to win them all so you wouldn't have to hear or read about the '72 Dolphins anymore.
I hope that feeling was fleeting. I hope that feeling is gone.
During tonight's Super Bowl I found myself rooting for the Giants simply because I wanted the Pats to lose and, in doing, keeping unique the Dolphins' claim on perfection.
I found myself rooting for the 1972 Dolphins even though they weren't playing. I found myself appreciating what those guys did 35 years ago. And it made me proud that I'm from South Florida and, regardless of how troubled today's Dolphins are, I feel proud that we still have the team from yesteryear to represent us.
Congratulations to the Giants, yes. But we should extend a hearty congratulations to the 1972 Dolphins also.
There will be a ticker tape parade in New York. How about a party for the '72 guys at Dolphin Stadium? And yes, how about popping one bottle of champagne at the affair?
Anyway, here are some of the comments from those members of the 1972 team that represented South Florida so well years ago and continue to do so now:
Mercury Morris: "When this kid scored, a tear came into my eye ... I'm very humbled at what the Giants were able to do as underdogs, realizing that on any given Sunday, anybody can beat anybody else -- except in 1972."
Don Shula: "The Patriots had a great season, but it shows just how difficult it is to go undefeated. Our players and our fans feel that much more proud of our accomplishment. Look at how good New England is -- 18-0. And they had the lead late in the fourth quarter in this game and that could have been 19-0, surpassing our 17-0 season. But New York hung in there and you really have to give that football team and that coaching staff credit and I know their fans are very proud."
Jim Kiick: "Obviously, we're proud to still be the only undefeated team in the history of the National Football League. We're proud of it. Why shouldn't we be? We never were against the New England Patriots. We have our accomplishments. We're not comparing ourselves to anyone else from other generations. We're happy with our own accomplishments. The Patriots are a great football team. Unfortunately, they didn't win the Super Bowl."
Jim Mandich: "The drive Eli [Manning] put together at the end of the game will go down in Super Bowl history as one of the great drives ever. As for the 1972 Miami Dolphins, I don't take joy in the fact the Patriots lost. Period. But I do relish and savor the fact that there has only been one unbeaten team in the history of the NFL, and it is the 1972 Miami Dolphins. Of that, I am extremely proud."
And he shouldn't be alone Dolphins nation. Not at all.